Ready The Rumble: Inter Milan v. Barcelona

People do love the special o

94:00 - Corner for Barca…nothing happens and TWEET TWEET TWEET GAME OVER. Inter celebrate, Mourinho goes wild, Valdez tries and stops him…a forgetful game until the last 10 minutes. Mourinho versus Van Gaal, Inter Milan versus Bayern Munich in a few weeks…wow. In Madrid, Real fans are celebrating!

4 minutes added. At this rate that’s 6 more attacking chances for Barca. Bojan sends the ball into the back of the net but the ball hit Yaya Toure’s hand right before. Unlucky for the Catalans.

89:00 – Barcelona fans are in full voice as they cheer their team on. Inter taking their time on kicks but as soon as they kick it Barca come back and attack. How many minutes of stoppage will there be?

87:00 – Xavi sends in a rasping shot that is well saved by Cesar. That’s followed by a Messi shot that Cesar claims well… The onslaught is amazing to watch!

84:00 – GOOOAL…. Pique. The little passing system breaks through the Inter backline and Pique who looked a touch offside gets the ball, spins around, fooling everyone and sends a shot into the back of the net…and exciting 6 plus minutes are left!!!!!

82:00 – Messi sends a beautiful cross and Bojan comes charging and sends a powerful header just wide. That was the best chance yet for Barca!

81:00 – Mourinho adds to his defense by trying to keep the ball away from a Barca player when it went into touch! nice one.

76:00 - Barca like the Spanish national team only know one way to play. They keep trying that extra splitting pass when they need to  run at the defenders and shoot. They cannot break Inters line this way.

73:00 – An amazing stat is flashed on the screen. 455 completed passes for Barcelona compared to the 59 by Inter Milan…WOW…WOW and yet it’s 0-0.

70:00 - This game like yesterdays has become a bit of a disappointment. A lot of it has to do with the sending off but did we expect anything else from a Mourinho’s run team? Barcelona becoming increasingly and increasingly frustrated are giving away silly fouls. Inter attack and even have more than 1 man going forward. Muntari dances around with the ball, passes to Maicon who wins a corner. Nothing comes off it.

67:00 - Snejider who has been non-existent in this game is being replaced by Muntari.  Balotelli is sulking in the corner and refuses to answer any of my questions.

66:00 – Strangely, Barca are now crossing the ball now. Unfortunately it will take Jeffren getting on Bojan’s back to challenge Lucio for the ball.

62:00 – Ibra and Messi play a 1-2 and Messi is brought down by a series of little touches but play is waved on. That was Ibra last touch of the ball as he is replaced by Bojan Krkic. Oscar winner Sergi Busquets is replaced by Jeffren. Barca going for tiny small ball here as the entire forward line could fit in the palm of my left hand.

59:00 - Wave upon wave of Catalan attacking is being stifled by the Inter defense who are just out-muscling the ball of the Barca attackers. Ibra has disappeared and Messi and Xavi are being charged down as soon as they touch the ball. Great game plan by the Portuguese coach.

54:00 – Apparently Gabby Milito was subbed at half and attack minded defender Maxwell is on. Barca win a corner after Pedro runs at the Inter defense. Nothing comes from it though. Inter Milan playing very much like Chelsea after they took a lead under the “Special One”

51:00 - Second half just like the first. All Barca but still can’t find the killer pass to trouble Cesar.

TWEET – and Inter kick it off. 45 minutes away from deciding who meets Bayern Munich in the finals.

And they’re coming back on the pitch. Over heard here at headquarters… “hmmm i want some of that Pep/Jose one on one action” and that wasn’t from Mario! I do wonder what Mourinho whispered to his Barca counterpart.

TWEET - And that’s half. Barcelona need two goals and have a man advantage but their slick passing attacking needs something special as Mourinho’s Inter are defending very well. The Barcelona midfielders need to draw the defenders out if they are going to resort to the clever through ball, otherwise they are playing into Inter Milans hands.

43:00 – Chivu tackles Messi and gets a card for his troubles. Free kick is about 30 yards out and Ibra hits it and it goes just over. Nice shot but not troubling to the Inter keeper.

39:00 - All Barca as they’re controlling the match. Alves gets the ball deep in the Inter Milan penalty box and lays off to Ibra who shoots, but Samuel launches himself and blocks the shot. Inspired defending here.

35:00 – Time wasting already as the Inter keeper gets carded for taking his sweet ass time. Balotelli is now chuckling to himself as if they do lose, the fans will blame Motta. Actually i think, Balotelli would not be a late second half introduction as he holds the ball up well. We shall see how this plays out.

32:00 - I don’t think the sending off changes Inters tactics all that much. I suspect there will be less foray into the Barcelona half but the Catalans will have to be wary of Eto’o. Messi gets the ball on the right corner of the box and dribbles his way across the box and unleashes a shot that Cesar has to stretch out for and just gets his fingertips too and out for a corner. Close that by the Argentine.

28:00 – Pedro brings down Eto’o and is yellow carded and then Thiago Motta goes for the ball as he does it his hand brushed Sergi Busquets face who reacts strongly and the referee immediately brandishes a red card…WOW. Motta and Mourinho are justifiably angry. That was worse then yesterdays red card. Something has to be done about these refs before the world cup.

25:00 – Inter break and Eto’o gets the ball but an awkward bounce makes control hard and Barca come back to defend. Inter corner

19:00 - Barcelona are putting on a one touch passing clinic and the ball finds Ibra in the box but he controls it with his hand…they’re looking dangerous but will need to find other avenues to attack as well. They need to draw the Inter defenders out by shooting outside the box. Xavi lllustrates this perfectly by bringing down a gorgeous pass but instead of shooting tries to thread the ball to Messi and it is cut out.

14:00 - Barcelona attacking from everywhere, wings, down the center, soon they will be coming from the sky. ..but the Inter defense is holding up strong and Cesar hasn’t been troubled.

10:00 Dani Alves has a typical marauding run and is brought down. Messi takes the kick outside the box and people fall down like bowling pins. All sorts of fouls and Ibra’s shirt is ripped but nothing gets called for the Catalans.

9:00 - So Mario, what do you think of the opening 10 minutes of play? Silence as the Italian striker has his headphones in and is doing a suduko puzzle on his iPhone…sigh

5:00 - As expected Barca are controlling most of the ball. Inter should be content to smother any attack and break on the counter…question is can they stop the near perfect attacking force that is Barcelona? As I write this, other Milito (Gabriel) sends an awkward miss-kick out for touch. Wonder if the brothers Milito have a side bet going on? Loser has to rubs dads feet at chritsmas?

3:00 – Pedro turns Maicon and sends in a stinging shot that Cesar doesn’t seem to care about…Gasps here at TSG commentary headquarters though. Guess our depth perception needs some working on!

2:00 - Barca passing well and Messi wins a free kick down the right wing outside the box. Xavi takes but it bounces of Keita and goes out for a goal kick. Eto’o back at his old stomping grounds. Can Ibra produce on a week day? we will find out soon!

Barca to kick it off…TWEET…GAME ON

Pep looking sharp in his silver suit! Mourinho…always smooth!

WOW. The barca fans are good at holding those colored pieces of plastic up and the view from afar with the blue, yellow and red pieces looks spectacular. The champions league anthem plays as the players stand behind their respective kids…Its EXCITING!

Wynalda just made an asinine comment about what Barca fans will be drinking depending on the outcome of the game…IDIOT!

So Mario, you’re a surprise inclusion on the bench. After last weeks semi you threw your shirt on the ground in disgust cause the Inter fans were booing your poor performance. Your teammates chastised you for not trying when you came on and you’ve had constant battles with the special one. Yet, people say you’re a charming and caring fellow most of the time, so whats the story?

“Vaffanculo pezzo di merda!”

hmmm…ok…well maybe he will chime in later.

Key question: Will Diego Milito run free behind a pressing Barca backline?

Hello all – Shaun here.

First, thanks to all of you who are voting for me as number 1 live commentator. I’m very flattered and excited about today’s clash of the titans! Today I will be sharing my comments and observations about todays game with mis-understood firecracker and talented Italian striker Mario Balotelli.

If anyone needs a new team next season its Mario. He’s incredibly talented, got a good shot, a good finisher and sets up his team mates. He’s subject to racist chants by his own countrymen. It also doesn’t help that he’s insecure and acts like a spoiled child. I bet sir Alex could sort him out!

——————————————————————-

Here are the starting line-ups via the official FC Barcelona twitter account:

Barca: Valdes, Alves, Piqué, Milito, Touré, Xavi, Keita, Sergio B., Pedro, Messi i Ibra

(I love that Barca themselves use “Ibra”…plenty of room on the Twitter for more…)

Inter: Julio César, Samuel, Zanetti, Maicon, Lucio, Motta, Sneijder, Cambiasso, Eto’o, Milito and Pandev

More coming…

From Matthew:

I can honestly say this is by far the biggest club match I’ve been excited for since last Champ’s final or perhaps before.

So much here.

Is Barca’s confidence shaken at all with the hole they’ve dug?

If Barca comes out and there game plan doesn’t work, will the players stick with it?

Does Pep Guardiola trump his likely La Liga foe next year, Jose Mourinho?

What happens if Ibra and Pedro stick two in the back of the net before half=time — that’s an awfully defensive line-up there from Inter?

Will Barca’s backline get beat over the top by Sneijder-to-Milito or will Toure be a difference maker in shutting that connection down?

Oh boy, Oh boy, oh boy?

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22 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 11:19 AM

  2. “Oh boy, Oh boy, oh boy!”

    agreeeeeeeeeeeee.

    btw, TSG-CO match watching event for the CL final?

    Reply

  3. Posted by Dylan on 2010/04/28 at 11:42 AM

    ehh, I’ll go to the gym tomorrow.

    Reply

  4. Posted by Ethan55 on 2010/04/28 at 11:48 AM

    What would be a tragedy today is if Maicon or Sneijder get a yellow, Inter goes through, and then those two are out of the final.

    Reply

  5. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 11:53 AM

    Wow, Barca extremely wide on the attack…bringing even Ibra out to the sideline trying to win individual match-ups against Inter defenders.

    Reply

  6. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 12:09 PM

    Barca can’t find the final ball.

    Inter is so disciplined that Sergio made a mistake on the ball in his own half and Milito didn’t chase.

    Inter also seem to content to defend until they give up a goal. Milito just took a ball into the corner for crissakes…first time I’ve ever seen that in the 1st half.

    Reply

  7. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 12:15 PM

    Can we call that “Not the Hand of God” — horrific, horrific call.

    Reply

  8. Posted by Dylan on 2010/04/28 at 1:02 PM

    The official really took the air out of the game. Inter will be content to do this until Barca can score. I really feel that the ref has made to much of an impact. A yellow would have been more than enough for the foul.

    Reply

  9. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/04/28 at 1:11 PM

    Even before the sending off, Inter were content to keep their shape and not give anything away for 90 minutes. Sure, they have the lead, but… I guess it’s only the final result that matters.

    Sending off was a joke.

    Reply

  10. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 1:14 PM

    Barca have missed Iniesta terribly in this series–either Messi needs to do too much to find an opening or they can’t link to him with space

    Reply

    • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/04/28 at 1:24 PM

      Give Inter credit for crowding him out and denying that space. It has been a stubborn defensice effort. If you think about it, as much as Barcelona have had the ball, how many times have they truly tested Caesar?

      Reply

  11. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 1:23 PM

    Spot on Shaun!

    76:00 – Barca like the Spanish national team only know one way to play. They keep trying that extra splitting pass when they need to run at the defenders and shoot. They cannot break Inters line this way

    Reply

    • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 1:24 PM

      They need to move the ball faster — either by cross or just a long square around the pitch…they’ll never find any openings with what they are doing.

      Reply

  12. Posted by Marcos on 2010/04/28 at 1:23 PM

    Jose Mourinho’s new book “How to stop Messi”…

    Reply

  13. Posted by Antonio H. on 2010/04/28 at 1:24 PM

    USA vs Spain = Inter vs Barca…think about it

    Reply

    • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/04/28 at 1:25 PM

      Great reference — I was thinking the same thing…

      Wow Messi frustrated — he’s got to stop moving sideways with the ball — it does nothing.

      Reply

    • Posted by Antonio H. on 2010/04/28 at 1:41 PM

      except we kept a clean sheet :>

      Reply

  14. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/04/28 at 1:27 PM

    How did he miss that?!?!

    Reply

  15. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/04/28 at 1:33 PM

    They actually taking some shots from distance – all it will take is for the keeper to spill one…

    Reply

  16. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/04/28 at 1:41 PM

    I guess Inter deserve a little luck for that handball call that led to the goal, as they were wrongfully playing with 10 men…

    Reply

  17. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/04/30 at 4:00 AM

    I think it’s ironic that an Italian player is crying foul play.

    Reply

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